Occupational health services
- Category: Adult social care
- Last Updated: 19 August 2016
Occupational health is about the effect of work on our health and about making sure that you are fit for the work that you do. An additional aim is to ensure that work premises are safe for employees and visitors and that accidents are prevented wherever possible.
Under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, employers have to take steps to make sure that they are aware of the hazards in a workplace and to control the risk. Various hazards can exist in the workplace including working with hazardous chemicals, dust or fumes, lifting and handling of goods and slips, trips and falls. If these hazards are not controlled, this may result in accidents or conditions such as asthma, or can make existing conditions such as back pain worse.
An employer must eliminate or control significant risks and this may include a change in procedure, providing specialist equipment and clothing and may also involve arranging regular medical checks.
Employees also have a duty to take reasonable care of their own health and safety, to take care of others who may be affected by whatever they do and to co-operate with their employer on health and safety matters.
When an illness is caused by work, or when there has been a serious injury, an employer has to report this to the enforcing authority, which is either the District Council or the Health and Safety Executive ( HSE ). Please see the Reporting of Injuries and Dangerous Diseases Occurrences Regulations on how to report an accident or illness.
The District Council and the (HSE) will be able to advise employers and employees on the health and safety legislation. The HSE Employment Medical Advisory Service (EMAS) can also provide advice relating to health issues associated with employment. They can be contacted using the link on the right.
The HSE also produces a large range of publications and booklets, many of which are free of charge. These can be ordered by telephone or via their website.
For further information or advice, email Health and Environment or telephone 01653 600666.